Eleutherodactylus coqui - Thomas, 1966
Puerto Rican Coqui
Other English Common Names: Common Coqui
Taxonomic Status: Accepted
Related ITIS Name(s): Eleutherodactylus coqui Thomas, 1966 (TSN 173559)
Unique Identifier: ELEMENT_GLOBAL.2.105062
Element Code: AAABD04100
Informal Taxonomy: Animals, Vertebrates - Amphibians - Frogs and Toads
Image 10927

© Forrest Brem

 
Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family Genus
Animalia Craniata Amphibia Anura Leptodactylidae Eleutherodactylus
Genus Size: D - Medium to large genus (21+ species)
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Concept Reference
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Concept Reference: Frost, D. R. 1985. Amphibian species of the world. A taxonomic and geographical reference. Allen Press, Inc., and The Association of Systematics Collections, Lawrence, Kansas. v + 732 pp.
Concept Reference Code: B85FRO01HQUS
Name Used in Concept Reference: Eleutherodactylus coqui
Taxonomic Comments: See Hedges (1989) for information on relationships of West Indian Eleutherodactylus.
Conservation Status
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NatureServe Status

Global Status: G4
Global Status Last Reviewed: 20Apr2004
Global Status Last Changed: 18Oct1996
Rounded Global Status: G4 - Apparently Secure
Nation: United States
National Status: NNA (05Nov1996)

U.S. & Canada State/Province Status
Due to latency between updates made in state, provincial or other NatureServe Network databases and when they appear on NatureServe Explorer, for state or provincial information you may wish to contact the data steward in your jurisdiction to obtain the most current data. Please refer to our Distribution Data Sources to find contact information for your jurisdiction.
United States Florida (SNA), Hawaii (SNA), Louisiana (SNA)

Other Statuses

IUCN Red List Category: LC - Least concern

NatureServe Global Conservation Status Factors

Range Extent: 1000-20,000 square km (about 400-8000 square miles)
Range Extent Comments: Native and present throughout Puerto Rico, though not common in arid southwest. Sea level to 1200 m (Toro Negro) (Schwartz and Henderson 1988).

Introduced on St. Thomas and St. Croix, Dominican Republic (Joglar and Rios-Lopez, 1998, Herpetol. Rev. 29:107), and Hawaii (Kraus et al. 1999). Also introduced in Florida, where this frog now exists apparently only in greenhouses; not clearly established (Bartlett and Bartlett 1999). Purported record from New Orleans, Louisiana (e.g., Conant and Collins 1991), is based only on a few males that lived in a greenhouse for a few years and do not constitute a legitimate occurrence (Dundee, 1991, Herpetol. Rev. 22:122).

Number of Occurrences:  
Number of Occurrences Comments: Represented by many and/or large occurrences throughout most of the range.

Population Size: 100,000 - 1,000,000 individuals
Population Size Comments: Total adult population size is unknown but surely exceeds 100,000.

Viability/Integrity Comments: Many occurrences have good viability.

Overall Threat Impact: Low
Overall Threat Impact Comments: Tolerant of substantial habitat alteration. Burrowes et al. (2004) suggested that declines of this frog in parts of Puerto Rico may reflect a possible synergistic interaction between drought and the pathological effect of the chytrid fungus.

Short-term Trend Comments: Extent of occurrence has increased somewhat as a result of introductions outside the native range. Populations of this species have recently declined in parts of El Yunque, one of the best protected forests in Puerto Rico (Burrows et al. 2004).

Long-term Trend: Decline of <30% to increase of 25%

Intrinsic Vulnerability: Moderately vulnerable

Environmental Specificity: Broad. Generalist or community with all key requirements common.

Other NatureServe Conservation Status Information

Distribution
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Global Range: (1000-20,000 square km (about 400-8000 square miles)) Native and present throughout Puerto Rico, though not common in arid southwest. Sea level to 1200 m (Toro Negro) (Schwartz and Henderson 1988).

Introduced on St. Thomas and St. Croix, Dominican Republic (Joglar and Rios-Lopez, 1998, Herpetol. Rev. 29:107), and Hawaii (Kraus et al. 1999). Also introduced in Florida, where this frog now exists apparently only in greenhouses; not clearly established (Bartlett and Bartlett 1999). Purported record from New Orleans, Louisiana (e.g., Conant and Collins 1991), is based only on a few males that lived in a greenhouse for a few years and do not constitute a legitimate occurrence (Dundee, 1991, Herpetol. Rev. 22:122).

U.S. States and Canadian Provinces

Due to latency between updates made in state, provincial or other NatureServe Network databases and when they appear on NatureServe Explorer, for state or provincial information you may wish to contact the data steward in your jurisdiction to obtain the most current data. Please refer to our Distribution Data Sources to find contact information for your jurisdiction.
Color legend for Distribution Map
Endemism: endemic to a single nation

U.S. & Canada State/Province Distribution
United States FLexotic, HIexotic, LAexotic

Range Map
Note: Range depicted for New World only. The scale of the maps may cause narrow coastal ranges or ranges on small islands not to appear. Not all vagrant or small disjunct occurrences are depicted. For migratory birds, some individuals occur outside of the passage migrant range depicted. For information on how to obtain shapefiles of species ranges see our Species Mapping pages at www.natureserve.org/conservation-tools/data-maps-tools.

Range Map Compilers: IUCN, Conservation International, NatureServe, and collaborators, 2004

Ecology & Life History
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Reproduction Comments: Breeds throughout year, mostly in wet season (April-October). Up to 5 clutches per season (Townsend 1989). Mean interclutch interval about 8 weeks during wet season (Townsend and Stewart 1994). Male attends eggs throughout development, reducing desiccation and cannibalism. Eggs hatch in 17 (June-July) to 26 (January-February) days (Townsend and Stewart 1986). Sexually mature in about 1 year (Woolbright and Stewart 1987). Few adults survive to the following year (Stewart 1995). See Michael (1995, Herpetological Review 26:27-29) for information on captive breeding.
Ecology Comments: Males defend diurnal shelters; feeding territories defended by females (Schwartz and Henderson 1991).

Small juveniles sometimes are preyed on by giant crab spiders (OLIOS) (Formanowicz et al. 1981). Viable eggs sometimes preyed on by flies (Diptera: Phoridae).

Density ranges as high as 20,570/ha; populations decline with drought (see Stewart 1995). In the central mountain of Puerto Rico, adult density was 8-25 per 100 sq m in the wet season, 3-19 per 100 sq m in the dry season; juvenile density was highest in the wet season, egg density highest in the dry season (Fogarty and Vilella 2002).

Populations increased after Hurricane Hugo (September 1989), perhaps due to an increase in retreat sites and a decrease in invertebrate predators (Woolbright 1991).

Annual mortality rate is more than 90% (Stewart 1995).

This species have an observable effect on forest nutrient dynamics (Beard et al. 2002).

Non-Migrant: Y
Locally Migrant: N
Long Distance Migrant: N
Mobility and Migration Comments: Total nightly movements average 3-4.5 m (Woolbright 1985).
Palustrine Habitat(s): Riparian
Terrestrial Habitat(s): Forest - Hardwood, Suburban/orchard, Woodland - Hardwood
Special Habitat Factors: Fallen log/debris, Standing snag/hollow tree
Habitat Comments: Mesic broadleaf forest, suburbs, gardens, greenhouses (especially in Florida); in bromeliads, holes in cut banks, under logs, rocks, or trash, in palm axils, curled leaves, tree holes (Schwartz and Henderson 1991). Often climbs to forest canopy at dusk (except juveniles, which stay on or near ground, and calling males, which remain on understory call sites during night); drops to ground at dawn, retreats to cover on or near ground (Stewart 1985, 1993).

Terrestrial breeder; no aquatic larval stage. Male leads female to semi-enclosed nest site (e.g., dead curled leaf or palm petiole) (Townsend and Stewart 1986) on or near ground. Males call from perch averaging 2 m above ground (Narins and Hurley 1982); calling sites mostly open surfaces or shallow depressions lacking close cover, such as surfaces of leaves and tree trunks and axils of sierra palms (Townsend 1989); calling sites as high as 45 feet in mesic forest, from 20-30 feet in xeric forest (Schwartz and Henderson 1991). Readily uses artificial retreat and nest sites; such use can result in increased population size (Schwartz and Henderson 1991).

Adult Food Habits: Invertivore
Food Comments: Eats mainly arthropods, rarely small vertebrates such as lizards. Nonbrooding adults forage at night in forest canopy (Stewart 1993). Juveniles forage on upper surfaces of leaves within 2 m of ground (Formanowicz et al. 1981). Foraging success reduced during dry season (Woolbright and Stewart 1987).
Adult Phenology: Crepuscular, Nocturnal
Immature Phenology: Crepuscular, Nocturnal
Phenology Comments: Calling peaks between dusk and midnight; lesser peak occurs at dawn (Drewry and Rand 1983, Woolbright 1985). Locomotor activity is most frequent shortly after dusk and shortly before dawn; more active when foliage is wet (Woolbright 1985).
Length: 6 centimeters
Economic Attributes Not yet assessed
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Management Summary Not yet assessed
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Population/Occurrence Delineation
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Group Name: Leptodactylid Frogs

Use Class: Not applicable
Minimum Criteria for an Occurrence: Occurrences are based on evidence of historical presence, or current and likely recurring presence, at a given location. Such evidence minimally includes collection or reliable observation and documentation of one or more individuals (including immature stages) in or near appropriate habitat where the species is presumed to be established and breeding.
Separation Barriers: Busy major highway such that frogs rarely if ever cross successfully; major lake or fast-flowing river; intensive development dominated by buildings and pavement.
Separation Distance for Unsuitable Habitat: 1 km
Separation Distance for Suitable Habitat: 5 km
Separation Justification: Movements of these frogs are poorly known. During wet weather at night, leptodactylids undoubtedly can traverse most natural and seminatural upland habitats. Because these frogs are not tied to permanent aquatic habitats for breeding, likely they range fairly widely in upland habitats, though certain habitat specialists may be less likely to do so. Total nightly movements of individual Eleutherodactylus coqui averaged 3-4.5 m (Woolbright 1985), but annual home range size is unknown. Until further information on home range and dispersal is available, the default minimum separation distance of 1 km should be used for unsuitable habitat. Because these frogs are certainly capable of long moves, it seems unlikely that locations separated by a gap of less than a several kilometers of suitable habitat would represent independent occurrences over the long term.
Inferred Minimum Extent of Habitat Use (when actual extent is unknown): .5 km
Date: 21Sep2004
Author: Hammerson, G.
Population/Occurrence Viability
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U.S. Invasive Species Impact Rank (I-Rank) Not yet assessed
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Authors/Contributors
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NatureServe Conservation Status Factors Edition Date: 20Apr2004
NatureServe Conservation Status Factors Author: Hammerson, G.
Element Ecology & Life History Edition Date: 25Feb2003
Element Ecology & Life History Author(s): Hammerson, G.

Zoological data developed by NatureServe and its network of natural heritage programs (see Local Programs) and other contributors and cooperators (see Sources).

References
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  • Bartlett, R. D., and P. P. Bartlett. 1999b. A field guide to Florida reptiles and amphibians. Gulf Publishing Company, Houston, Texas. xvi + 278 pp.

  • Beard, K. H., K. A. Vogt, and A. Kulmatiski. 2002. Top-down effects of a terrestrial frog on forest nutrient dynamics. Oecologia 133:583-593.

  • Burrowes, P. A., R. L. Joglar, and D. E. Green. 2004. Potential causes for amphibian declines in Puerto Rico. Herpetologica 60:141-154.

  • Burrowes, P.A., Joglar, R.L. and Green, D.E. 2004. Potential causes for amphibian declines in Puerto Rico. Herpetologica. 60(2):141-154.

  • Conant, R., and J. T. Collins. 1998. A field guide to reptiles and amphibians: eastern and central North America. Third edition, expanded. Houghton Mifflin Co., Boston, Massachusetts. 616 pp.

  • Drewry, G. E., and A. S. Rand. 1983. Characteristics of anacoustic community: Puerto Rican frogs of the genus ELEUTHERODACTYLUS. Copeia 1983:941-953.

  • Fogarty, J. H., and F. J. Vilella. 2002. Population dynamics of Eleutherodactylus coqui in cordillera forest reserves of Puerto Rico. Journal of Herpetology 36:193-201.

  • Formanowicz, D. R., et al. 1981. Predation by giant crab spiders on the Puerto Rican frog ELEUTHERODACTYLUS COQUI. Herpetologica 37:125-129.

  • Frost, D. R. 1985. Amphibian species of the world. A taxonomic and geographical reference. Allen Press, Inc., and The Association of Systematics Collections, Lawrence, Kansas. v + 732 pp.

  • Hedges, S. B. 1989. Evolution and biogeography of West Indian frogs of the genus Eleutherodactylus: slow-evolving loci and the major groups. Pages 305-370 in C. A. Woods, ed. Biogeography of the West Indies, Sandhill Crane Press, Gainesville, Florida.

  • Hedges, S.B. 1993. Global amphibian declines: a perspective from the Caribbean. Biodiversity and Conservation. 2:290-303.

  • Hedges, S.B. 1999. Distribution of amphibians in the West Indies. Patterns of Distribution of Amphibians. A Global Perspective. Duellman, W.E.,editor. The Johns Hopkins Press. Baltimore, Maryland.

  • Hedges, S.B. 2001. Caribherp: database of West Indian amphibians and reptiles (http://www.caribherp.net). Pennsylvania State University. University Park, PA.

  • Henderson, R.W. and Powell, R 1999. West Indian herpetoecology. Caribbean Amphibians and Reptiles. Crother, B.I.,editor. 223-226. Academic Press. San Diego, California.

  • Henderson, R.W. and Powell, R. 2001. Responses by the West Indian herpetofauna to human-influenced resources. Caribbean Journal of Science. 37:41-54.

  • Joglar, R.L. 1999. Que Cante el Coquí Ensayos, Cartas y Otros Documentos Sobre la Conservación de la Biodiversidad en Puerto Rico (1987-1999). Proyecto Coquí. Puerto Rico.

  • Joglar, R.L. and Burrowes, P.A. 1996. Declining amphibian populations in Puerto Rico. Contributions to West Indian Herpetology: A Tribute to Albert Schwartz. Powell, R. and Henderson, R.W.,editor. 371-380. Society for the Study of Amphibians and Reptiles.

  • Joglar, R.L. and Rios, N. 1998. Eleutherodactylus coqui (Puerto Rican Coqui, Coquí Común) in Dominican Republic. Herpetological Review. 29:107.

  • Joglar, R.L., Burrowes, P.A. and Rios, N. 1996. Biology of the Puerto Rican cave-dwelling frog, Eleutherodactylus cooki, and some recommendations for its conservation. Contributions to West Indian Herpetology: A Tribute to Albert Schwartz. Powell, R. and Henderson, R.W.,editor. 12:251-258. Society for the Study of Amphibians and Reptiles. Ithaca.

  • Kraus, F., E. W. Campbell, A. Allison, and T. Pratt. 1999. ELEUTHERODACTYLUS frog introductions to Hawaii. Herpetological Review 30:21-25.

  • Loftus, W. F., and R. Herndon. 1984. Reestablishment of the coqui, ELEUTHERODACTYLUS COQUI Thomas, in southern Florida. SSAR Herpetol. Rev. 15:23.

  • Narins, P. M., and D. D. Hurley. 1982. The relationship between call intensity and function in the Puerto Rican coqui (Anura: Leptodactylidae). Herpetologica 38:287-295.

  • Rivero, J.A. 1998. Los Anfibios y Reptiles de Puerto Rico (The Amphibians and Reptiles of Puerto Rico). Second edition. Editorial de la Universidad de Puerto Rico, San Juan.

  • Schwartz, A., and R. W. Henderson. 1988. West Indian amphibians and reptiles: a check-list. Milwaukee Pub. Mus., Contrib. Biological Geology No. 74:1-264.

  • Schwartz, A., and R. W. Henderson. 1991. Amphibians and Reptiles of the West Indies: Descriptions, Distributions, and Natural History. University of Florida Press, Gainesville, Florida. xvi + 720 pp.

  • Stewart, M. M. 1985. Arboreal habitat use and parachuting by a subtropical forest frog. J. Herpetol. 19:391-401.

  • Stewart, M. M. 1993. Frequent fliers. Natural History, 2/93:42-48.

  • Stewart, M. M. 1995. Climate driven population fluctuations in rain forest frogs. Journal of Herpetology 29:437-446.

  • Townsend, D. S. 1989. The consequences of microhabitat choise for male reproductive success in a tropical frog (ELEUTHERODACTYLUS COQUI). Herpetologica 45:451-458.

  • Townsend, D. S., and M. M. Stewart. 1985. Direct development in ELEUTHERODACTYLUS COQUI (Anura: Leptodactylidae): a staging table. Copeia 1985:423-436.

  • Townsend, D. S., and M. M. Stewart. 1986a. Courtship and mating behavior of a Puerto Rican frog, Eleutherodactylus coqui. Herpetologica 42:165-170.

  • Townsend, D. S., and M. M. Stewart. 1986b. The effect of temperature on direct development in a terrestrial-breeding neotropical frog. Copeia 1986:520-523.

  • Townsend, D. S., and M. M. Stewart. Reproductive ecology of the Puerto Rican frog ELEUTHERODACTYLUS COQUI. J. Herpetol. 28:34-40.

  • Woolbright, L. L. 1985. Patterns of nocturnal movement andcalling by the tropical frog ELEUTHERODACTYLUS COQUI. Herpetologica 41:1-9.

  • Woolbright, L. L. 1991. The impact of Hurricane Hugo on forest frogs in Puerto Rico. Biotropica 23:462-467.

  • Woolbright, L. L., and M. M. Stewart. 1987. Foraging success of the tropical frog, ELEUTHERODACTYLUS COQUI: the cost of calling. Copeia 1987:69-75.

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